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Published: June 17th 2010
Another day, another state! We travelled from Georgia into South Carolina and the heat continued to build. It was over 100F when we arrived at our motel and we didn't move from our air conditioned room until the evening. Even then, all we did was go out to a shopping centre so we could use a supermarket, and we found a great buffet restaurant for dinner!!
The next day we drove into Charleston as the local bus was only hourly and the 10 mile trip to the centre of town took an hour! On the way we visited a barber. He was really friendly but took his time over both of us. It took an hour and a half for two hair cuts. Still, we are now neatly shorn (Russ a little more so than Trish!), which is wonderful in the heat.
To our amazement the car park we ended up in was free. We're not sure why, but we certainly are not complaining. We had a quick browse around an art fair and farmers market before setting off down Charleston's "Museum Mile". The architecture is lovely and we really wish we had felt a little more inclined to
stop and look but, you've guessed, the heat was just too much.
The indoor artesan market was nice and we saw some excellent local craftwork. That led us down to the riverside park where there was a welcome breeze. The Customs House looks formidable and the view across the river is lovely. In the park children were playing in the fountains and pelicans glided through the air. t was nice but it wasn't getting the city seen! So we set off and saw a few more lovely houses before deciding that an air conditioned bar would be more our scene for a while.
Of course, England v USA at the World Cup in South Africa may have clouded our judgement a little. We found a great place to eat and drink for a few hours. There was silence when England scored early in the game except for a muted Yeah
from Russ, and some of the patrons even stopped watching the baseball for a few minutes after the USA equalised!! A little energised from the cool air, or was it the beer, we continued our walk through Charleston. We saw the historic park where the first shots were
fired in the Civil War and tried, unsuccessfully, to identify exactly what antebellum
architecture is! Can anyone help?!!!
The next day we left our motel and drove over the bridge to Mount Pleasant and Patriots Point. There we had a walk around and got close to the USS Yorktown. We would have liked to visit the Medal of Honor (sic) museum but $16 each was too much when we were not going to stay long enough to justify the fee. Instead we saw their Vietnam battlecamp mock-up, some moving war memorials and the monument to the submariners. It was a very well laid out area and even the toilets were educational - do you know why they are called "heads" on a ship?????
From there we drove into a small park where Charles Pinckney's house awaits visitors. Mr Pinckney was one of the signatories on the original US constitution. We were free to wander around the estate and made the most of the short trails and information posts. The visitor's centre was beautifully cooled and we spent quite a while reading the exhibits. It certainly is a stark reminder of some of America's darkest days regarding slavery and
there were several pieces introducing us to Gullah
culture which we had not heard of before.
From Charleston we drove up to the State capital, Columbia. There temperatures were breaking new June records so we were no better off! It was just a night stop on our way up to the Blue Ridge Mountains where we hoped cooler air awaited our arrival!!
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